Water for CatsCat Care > Cat Diet > Water for Cats
A cat should have unrestricted access to clean, fresh drinking water at all times unless the animal is vomiting. Cats need to drink in order to replenish water that has been eliminated from the body through normal functions such as urination. In the wild state, cats obtain a high proportion of the moisture they need from their prey and may drink relatively little water. Similarly, domestic cats that eat meals with high moisture content, such as tinned food or home-prepared meat in gravy, may also have a low intake of water. However, cats are not always adept at adjusting the amount of water they need to drink according to the moisture content of their food. Some cats that are fed on commercial, dried foods do not receive enough moisture in their diet but do not compensate for this by drinking more water. Unfortunately, this can contribute towards the development of a blockage of the urinary tract in male cats and a severe disorder called feline urological syndrome (FUS).
Many cats seem to prefer drinking milk and, of course, this is composed largely of water and is also a good source of protein, fat and calcium. However, milk is more correctly a food rather than a drink and should not be given as a substitute for water. There is no harm in giving a cat a daily ration of milk if it enjoys it and it does not upset its digestion. There is a widespread belief that milk or even cream is the correct drink to give a cat. It may come as a surprise to learn that quite a number of adult cats, particularly Siamese and some other Eastern breeds, have a digestive intolerance to cow's milk. It appears that they may be allergic to a particular protein present in the milk and suffer digestive upset and diarrhea. Other cats may be deficient in the enzyme lactase, which is needed to break down the sugar (lactose) present in the milk. It may be necessary to withhold other dairy products, particularly cheese, from a cat that suffers from this disorder.
Water for cats is essential. It maintains the proper functioning of kidneys by flushing the toxic substances from the blood. Dehydration can affect the cat health and it can be fatal too. So the cat owner should understand the water needs of the cat.
How much water your cat should consume depends upon the Cat diet. Approximately, 200 ml water intake is recommended. Cat nutrition fulfills some of the moisture needs. If your cat eats canned food or home made food, the water content in it is higher. So it needs less water. If the cat eats dry food, it needs more water intake. So, the nutrition of the cat decides how much water intake is necessary. Proportion of water for cat varies according to the season too. Cats drink more water in summer, just as human beings do. However, if you notice that the water intake has risen all of a sudden, then it may be an alarming situation. It indicates one of the cat illnesses, feline hyperthyroidism. Consult your vet immediately.
Always keep fresh drinking water available. Nutrition for cat, exercise, grooming are some of the important factors of cat care. Take care about water intake of the cat too. Many people unknowingly ignore it but it may put the cat in great trouble.